(Bloomberg) –Brazil is providing one of the few bright spots for oil demand outside of Asia with the coronavirus continuing to ravage the U.S. and Europe.
Fuel consumption in Latin America’s largest economy has already surpassed pre-virus levels and is expected to be stronger than 2019 going into next year on the back of robust agricultural demand and more driving.
“The rebound in fuel demand was a big surprise,” said Paula Jara, an analyst at consultancy Wood Mackenzie Ltd. “When you come to think about it, Petrobras is arguably a unique case worldwide because they were able to raise fuel-making pretty quickly,” she said by phone from Mexico City.
Brazil’s state-controlled Petroleo Brasileiro SA refineries processed 1.85 million barrels a day of crude oil in October, a 17% increase compared with the same time a year ago as the company worked to meet stronger diesel demand from a record crop season and a pull for gasoline for summer driving. Petrobras has also been benefiting from increased demand for the low-sulfur fuel oil it produces.
Updated: December 11, 2020 2:11 PM
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